Under The Threat of Being Grounded From 3,000 Kilometers Away

Dear the Bank and Mikey oops I mean Mike,

I’m very sorry about my earlier email. My Dad read it because I always CC my family when I think an email is funny and my father said, and I quote, “Unwashed, you are to email that man, then email the bank and beg them for forgiveness.” Actually that isn’t a quote, there may have been a speech about being grown up and writing for your audience.

It was a long soliquay, and my Dad sounded almost as disappointed in me as the time I wrote a post about sending my mother pictures of animal genetalia as a Valentine. That it was really bad, Mike, if I had still been living at home when the penis post came out, I get the feeling that I would have been sitting in my room sans computer, pen, paper, papyrus, stone tablet and rocks, all forms of writing tools hidden with me in the corner reflecting on “What I had done”. So like I said, my Dad’s reaction to the email was close to that, so allow me to take this moment to apologize and retract my words.

I am absolutely a responsible adult, who doesn’t drink at all. I am a pillar of society; I would never get my grandmother arrested or chase after a neighbour’s dog while barking. Also I come from responsible stock- my mother carefully drives around shopping carts instead of ramming them to make her own parking space. Also, I have a squeaky clean background, I sit at home weaving sleeping mats for children in third world countries; I have no time for those who commit break and enters.

If that doesn’t convince you, of what an upstanding, responsible, financially sound citizen I am, then you should come to my house to see my filing system. Admittedly I’ve been told that filing “G for swim goggles” is a bit confusing but once you get the hang of it it’s quite easy and the possum only bites when there’s the chance of kiwi.

Anyway, please give me my mortgage and disregard my earlier email. I promise to be grown up and very very serious from here on out. I’ll even wear a girdle if that’s what it take. Just as soon as I figure out what piece of clothing a girdle is.

Sincerely and most adultedly yours,

The Great Unwashed

UPDATE- Mike, I’m really sorry, I know I said I’d wear one, but I just discovered what a girdle is. It seems way too uncomfortable. Would you settle for a bonnet? Then I wouldn’t have to worry about bad hair days.

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The Bank Got Drunk and Let Me Buy A House

To : The Very Understanding Man Who Patiently Explained Mortgages To Me And Wasn’t Offended When I Abruptly Hung Up On Him. Twice

Subject : CRAP!

Mike,

Hi, I’m so sorry about all the documents. It’s not that I forgot, it’s actually that I’m a horrible person AND I forgot. But they’re here now. Or at least they will be as soon as my husband gets home and makes the scanner work.

This would be why my mortgage was set up by my Aunt Camelia; she’s the only one tenacious enough to continually hunt me down and force me to complete all the necessary bank documents. Mike, can I call you Mikey? Mikey, if it makes you feel any better, I was writing and editing a book the month I applied for a mortgage three years ago, so if you think that I’m hard to get a hold of now, you can imagine what it would have been like then. Also I was constantly drunk.

This email is making me sound very responsible. Which I am. You should totally renew my mortgage. At a low rate too, just as soon as I figure out how to send those documents you requested two months ago. Did I mention that our scanner is confusing and has a vendetta against me?

In addition to no longer being drunk all of the time or spending my life writing a book that I’m not being paid for, you should know that I no longer have a filing system involving naked backs. That tidbit should probably go in the folder that the bank keeps on me, the comment should read “Has advanced organizational system- no nudity”. That comment alone is a testament to how grown up I’ve become.

And, I should add that this is the first off the wall email you’ve received from me. If that’s not progress, I don’t know what is. Three years ago after my Aunt Camelia had left five messages on my phone requesting ridiculous items like my Notice of Assessment and other nonsense, saying things like “tomorrow” then, “Friday at the latest” and finally “Please, please Unwashed get it to me in two weeks and stop publishing posts about kicking financial institutions”, I would finally return her calls with a bizarre email about how I was channeling “Little House on the Prairie” and building a cabin in the woods so as to avoid all this mind numbing paperwork.

My aunt loves me very much.

Mikey, I realize that none of this email is those documents that you need but you have my assurance that I will send them to you post haste and won’t get side tracked by researching locally made bamboo toothbrushes or Playboy bunnies.

You’ll have it tonight, I swear. Tuesday at the latest. Maybe April, but only if I forget completely, which I won’t because I wrote myself a detailed note on the fridge “Mike, no naked backs” so as long as my husband doesn’t erase my words thinking that I’m protesting Channing Tatum movies,

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Who would protest chiseled abs? (Photo Credit : Pintrest.com)

then my mortgage renewal papers will definitely be in your inbox at some point this year.

 

Maturely yours,

Unwashed

 

 

My Terrible Secret Crime: Goldilocks and Three Nuns

I broke into a nunnery. Before fingers start pointing and the police are called, I should state that it was an accident. Also it wasn’t my fault, unlike the time that my Grandma got arrested which was a little bit my fault. If we’re going to get technical about it, the whole break-in situation was my son’s fault. An explanation which sounds improbable but is true. I don’t know about you, but I’ve known some devious ten month olds in my day.

We had just moved to town, and Tex had a concert. Prior to heading out the door, he wrote down directions to the place and quickly told me the name of the building. It sounded like it could have been a place of worship, or a school. One of the two.

So there I was, running late, of course, because there is no other way to run with a ten month old baby. Also it was snowing. Not the nice, “Oh look, the yard is a snow globe” kind of snow, no it was the “You thought the world was going to end in flames? Wrong, it’ll be encased in ice” type of snow.

Popping Mini-Tex into the carrier and ducking my head to shield my face from the barrage of ice pellets, I ran from the car towards the building, which was a school, or a large church. Definitely one of the two. The snow obliterated sight, so unless the building was called “blank white space”, I have no idea what it said. Sitting here, reflecting on this blustery, winter moment, I realize that the whole debacle was actually the weather’s fault. If I am ever tried in court, I plan to pin the crime on Mother Nature. That woman is an unpredictable capital B sometimes.

Sprinting my late self and son up the steps, I pulled open the door, hoping to figure out where in the heck I was. Directly in front of me were two unassuming pieces of printer paper, one with the word “school” on it, directing to the right, and the other with “sisters”, concisely directing people up the other stairwell. This didn’t help me to figure out where I was, but I was fairly certain that any concert would be held in a school auditorium so I veered right.

The thing about small towns is that the school is the church, is also the curling rink, is the funeral home, is the dance hall, is the farmer’s market but the last one is only held there every other Saturday in the winter months. So I was just as likely to walk into a musical performance as to be yelled at to “hurry hard”, or have to pay my respects to a person I never knew, or quickly learn the steps to the electric slide with a baby on my back, as to find my husband.

Luckily I won the town lottery that day and found the right spot, which was just as well because any directions I would have received, had I been lost, would have included turning right at McPherson’s old farm even though McPherson hasn’t owned the land in years and no one can remember when the sign on the corner disappeared. Seeing my husband, I breathed a sigh of relief.

A quick sigh though, because I had to nurse Mini-Tex before my husband took the stage. Mini-Tex had just reached that challenging stage where he was still dependent on breastmilk but everything in the world was more exciting than boobs. The fact that in about twelve years, the only thought on Mini-Tex’s mind would be boobs, didn’t help me in the moment. Hence, I went off in search of a quiet, secluded place to feed him.

The band was occupying what looked like a teacher’s lounge, so I headed across the corridor to a darkened room. It was large and furnished with furniture which would have been trendy in your grandmother’s living room in 1940. Perhaps this was another teacher’s lounge? A super plush but dated one that the staff could mark tests in? But I wasn’t in search of a comfortable wing backed chair, I was looking for silence. The din from across the hall made Mini-Tex’s head whip around, he was desperate to figure out how to get in on the action.

On the other side of the room, beyond the floral-printed settees was a door. I still had yet to figure out the building’s purpose, but I was 100% sure it was a school with old furniture. Or a church with a lot of upholstered seating. Regardless, having grown up in a church, not like Quasimodo style obviously with my parents locking me in the bell tower until I bathed ( I would still be there), but more like, spent an average of two nights and a morning there, I was comfortable in God’s various homes. Like everyone but the moon children who learn math and history from their mothers, I had also spent the majority of my childhood in schools, making the other option a familiar stomping ground. Either way, I felt confident about the odds of locating an out of the way office or classroom to quietly nurse in.

I crossed the room and tried the door handle, it turned easily. On the other side of the door was the plushest, most luxurious carpet I had ever seen in any church or school. Not wanting to wet it with my boots, I slipped them off, and stepped inside a spartanly decorated room. It contained two wingback chairs, clearly the interior designer loved firm but cushy back support, and a desk with a wooden chair. There were only two items on the desk; half a pear and a knife.

At this point in the story when I was relaying it to my mother, she stopped and shrieked “Unwashed, tell me you didn’t eat the pear.” I didn’t. However I was getting a super weird vibe from the place. This was the weirdest school/church/curling rink that I had ever visited, however, Mini-Tex was finally eating with gusto, so I wasn’t about to return to the noisy room. Instead, I tiptoed towards what looked like an open entrance to a closet or another office.

Peering around the corner I saw a double bed, covered with a hand-tatted, lace quilt. Even if this was the most swanky sick room where students laid down before being picked up by their parents, the whole place was feeling way too strange for me, so I quickly hightailed it out of the room back to the band’s meeting spot. The musicians were just packing up their instruments to go onstage, so Mini-Tex and I made our way into the auditorium and found a seat near the back.

Mini-Tex bounced on my lap for three numbers, but wiggled his way loose during a march. Chasing my son as he crawled for freedom towards the exit, I spotted them, the two sisters sitting together in the last row. No doubt the third one was standing eating her pair, looking at the imprints my feet made on her carpet wondering “Who’s been looking at my bed?”

When I finished sharing the story with my mother, she gave me some sage advice; “Unwashed, when you feel the need to remove your shoes, that’s when you need to turn back.” I thought I’d share this wise nugget with you dear readers, so none of you make the same mistake, although clearly it wasn’t my mistake, it was entirely a combination Mini-Tex’s need to nurse, Mother Nature and small towns’ odd habit of multi-purposing buildings. I think of this story sometimes though, when I hear moms comment that they don’t have anything to tell their husbands at the end of the day- these ladies just aren’t committing enough break and enters.

Golden Equine Showers and Other Dubious Events I Can Anticipate In My Future: An Update On Where I’m Going To Live

Remember when I swore that I would update everyone on where Tex and I were going to live in my post Man Eating Fish, Bakery Theft and KKK Heaven: Let’s Introduce the Contestants? And then I didn’t? Well I have an excuse. It’s because I was showering off all the horse pee that was dumped on me. Figuratively thankfully.

Not so secretly, I had thought that Tex and I were staying. That our family would get to enjoy our happy home with its sun room and live in peaceful northern harmony for a couple more years. Or at the very worst, that we would be placed in the town that is a smaller version of where we live. After all, Tex is well liked at work, I mean who can live without a man who uses the word “eutectic” in a sentence? I know I can’t. Anyways with that confounding term and all Tex’s other shining qualities, I thought we were good, no better, I thought we were golden.

And we were. Covered in golden horsey showers that is, as the universe, or karma, or the gods, or whoever it was smited the both of us for being so cocky as to believe that we were going to stay.

When Tex told me where we were going to be placed, I quickly mass texted my family and close friends the name of the town and the words “I can’t even speak.” Then I dropped my phone and went to go curl up, lick my wounded ego and contemplate where I was going to live.

Frantically Sula tried texting, then calling all the while scrolling through my words to determine what place it was on my posted list we had been placed at. “Charm City?” her voicemail asked. “I don’t think it’s Charm City.” Then, when she Googled the place name, she realized the terrible truth. That we weren’t staying where we live, that we hadn’t been placed at my second choice, or my third choice or even my fourth choice with that fabulous indoor playground.

No dear readers, I’m heading to my seventh choice. The town that considers indoor plumbing and eeelecktricity, as they call it, to be “new fangled technology”. It was karma’s way of dumping a trough full of horse urine onto my head for being so smug as to only compose one version of my “updated” post revealing where my family was going to live. I was like those actors at the award ceremony who are nominated and still stand up when their name isn’t called on the stage.

I was going to invite you all to a bonfire at my house. We were going to light up all the boxes that I had saved just in case. Instead I started frantically packing said boxes, while my cowboy brother in-law who was visiting for the day said “Well $*@^, that sucks, I’m sorry.” while wrapping my equally shocked husband and I enormous, warm, bear hugs that only a rancher can give. My brother in-law then encouraged me to “scream, cry or break things- do whatever I need to do” while he watched Mini-Tex. I didn’t need to scream or break things, but I did cry while I started to box up our life.

So now that the moving van has been booked and housing with indoor plumbing has been secured (“Golly gee- you’re going to love this marvel!”), I can write an addendum to my Introduce the Contestants post.

Goodbye cruel world. I had wanted to invite you to a bonfire, but instead I’m moving six hours away, which doesn’t sound, far but it might as well be the moon in terms of distance to everything which resembles civilization. I hope everyone enjoys their grande coffees, automatic washers and dental floss. I will miss all of those things and you, my Unwashed public.

It is with a sad heart that I will pack up our covered wagon (we had to trade in our car to move to this place which is in the middle of nowhere) and bid you all adieu. The Great Unwashed will continue for ten or so posts because I have them banked but there’s no telling how long it will take me to teach a carrier pigeon to type my thoughts so wish me luck.

Soon to be very remotely yours,

The Great Unwashed

Is Everyone Finished Grunting In Public and Picking Chia Seeds Out Of Their Teeth?

You are? Excellent, then let’s talk. I’m a huge fan of New Year’s resolutions, January first is a great time to try and improve one’s self and become a better person. Normally I have about three or four personal goals to start the year, this year is a bit different though, there are twelve. Based on the sheer number of them, we can conclude that I was a pitiful human being last year.

None of my resolutions have to do with dropping pounds or fitness. Losing weight has only ever made me chronically hungry, so I walk around all day feeling like Oprah only with less money. Also chia seeds result in an excessive amount of flossing- there’s no need to make my dentist that happy. As for fitness, if spending an hour or more a day sweating next to people throwing heavy objects about and giving sideways glances to the woman who spends her entire life on the same elliptical is your happiness, more power to you. My personal take on all that is- it’s what hell looks like, only with air conditioning. The music is probably the same though.

I tend to make resolutions for my own happiness, or so that my life aligns better with my personal beliefs. For example my first and biggest resolution was about my phone.

  1. 40 Screen Unlocks a Day And Less Than 90 Minutes Of Usage Including Phonecalls

Ostensibly I was given a smartphone to take photos and videos of my son. While I have filled my phone with videos of Mini-Tex whacking every item in our house with his xylophone mallet, the majority of the time, I use my phone to check what these girls are up to

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Hey ladies, lookin’ good! (Photo Credit : pintrest.com)

and whether this man has died.

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This man is getting on in years, I have little time left to meet him ( Photo Credit: kokosoup.com)

Which is concerning, a little macabre and worst of all takes attention away from the little boy creating a symphony using the kitchen table legs. Initially I downloaded the “Break Free” app, but that only tracks a person’s data usage. Now I’m using the “Quality” app which locks smartphones for agreed upon periods of time. Before anyone gets upset, unless something in on fire, people can wait to talk to me. In addition, I should not be the first point of contact, my firefighting training is limited to the time I ran past the crazy guy in the park making a bonfire.

 

  1. Pinch Tex’s Butt More Often

I spend a chunk of the day carrying, holding, hugging, snuggling and touching my son. This has coincided with a steep drop off in the number of times I hug my husband. So I vowed to hug/grab/pinch and just basically show Tex that I love him more often each day. I aim for about five hugs. I’m managing four on average.

 

  1. Abusing Canada Post’s Good Natured Attitude And Mailing Bizarre Items

Sending cards to everyone and their distant second cousin who I met once at an opening for a hair salon is my hobby. Recently, with my new lack of free time due to raising a child, I’ve become complacent in my environmentalism. To combat this laziness, I’ve decided to reuse all paper, envelopes and wood pulp products that come my way. My personal goal is to reuse and repurpose items to the point that Sula would be mortified by my sending them to the government. She once saw the package I was sending my tax return in and remarked that the Canadian Revenue Agency would take it for a joke. Come to think of it, this may be why I was audited twice in the past year. Moving on.

 

  1. Hug a Homeless Person

Then give him five bucks. I’m on extended mat leave, in other words, I’m raising my son while making bupkis, but the thing is, I have everything; a loving husband, an adorable little baby, a roof over my head and a metric tonne of farm squash grown by my mother-in-law  (Would anyone like a butternut the size of a smart car?). I’d be hard pressed to find a luckier person. Consequently, no matter my means, it’s my job to give back. So sometimes I find a homeless person and hand them whatever is in my pocket, other times I choose an artist to support on Patreon. Whatever the act is, sharing my good fortune makes my life better.

 

So those are my resolutions that are bringing me joy this year, for all of you still sweating it out at the gym, eating kale and chia seed salad like it’s going out of style, good-o on you, someone needs to able to strut the runways and beaches, and it certainly won’t be me. Mostly because I’m a vampire, the beach is an exquisitely painful place for me.

What are your resolutions for this year my Unwashed public? Share them in the comments below!